20th October 2020, Skopje – The consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy are inevitable, being however to a great extent cushioned by the timely and appropriate monetary and fiscal measures. Most recent available data have spoken in favor of significant improvement of the economic situation, however, it is clear there is still large uncertainty thereabout. The same applies to the global economy as a whole, the recovery of which relies on public health and economic factors that are difficult to predict. Hence, it is necessary to further monitor the developments, adjust the policies and undertake timely measures, on regular basis. IMF will continue to provide support to the economies whenever there is a need and room therefor.

These are some of the recommendations of the IMF and WB Annual Meetings, from the meeting held between Minister of Finance, Fatmir Besimi, Governor Anita Angelovska – Bezoska, and the teams from the Ministry of Finance and the National Bank with the Director of the European Department at the International Monetary Fund, Alfred Kammer, the Head of the IMF Mission to the Republic of North Macedonia, Berglot Byornson Barkbu and the Regional Representative for the Western Balkans – Stephanie Eble.

During the meeting, special attention was also put on the challenges in the upcoming period, when addressing the health crisis is clearly a top priority and will be essential for safeguarding the economy and public finances. According to IMF estimates, what will be important in the upcoming months, will be to support the economy, as well as that the measures should be well-targeted, temporary and transparently implemented.

According to IMF, higher investment spending can help strengthen the economic growth potential in the coming period. As being pointed out at the meeting, the structural reforms must not be neglected throughout the COVID-19 crisis, being a precondition for further long-term economic growth.

In light of recovery of Macedonian economy, IMF senior officials said that the fact that the financial stability is constantly strengthened and that continuous activities are undertaken aimed at enhancing the regulations in this field, was of great importance. Banking sector, being the central pillar of the financial system, according to IMF, should and could play a key role in the upcoming revitalization period, in terms of providing support to the economy.

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